Sports facilities upgraded

Published: Thursday 6th September 12

Two of the borough’s most popular sporting facilities are being upgraded.

Athletics facilities at the Millennium Arena in Battersea Park are being refurbished as part of a £100,000 investment scheme.

The eight lane Olympic-standard running track will be completely refurbished and there will also be improved facilities for athletes who compete in the long jump and the pole vault.

These improvements coincide with work being carried out at the council's flagship riverside sports complex at Barn Elms, which will soon boast brand new international standard beach volleyball courts.

Sand from the beach volleyball tournament at the London 2012 Games is being used to provide a long-lasting Olympic legacy in the borough.

Work is now underway to create four recreational courts, capable of being converted into two international standard courts that could be used to stage matches involving British national teams.

When volleyball is not being played the courts will also be available for other beach sports events like beach soccer, tag rugby, beach ultimate frisbee and footvolley.

The £45,000 cost of introducing these sports to Barn Elms has been met in full by a grant from Volleyball England, following a successful funding application to Sport England.

The beach volleyball courts are expected to be ready for public use by the end of this month, while the refurbishment work at the Millennium Arena should be completed by the middle of October.

The council's spokesman on sports and leisure Cllr Jonathan Cook said: "These are exciting developments for sportsmen and women in Wandsworth.

"The work being carried out in Battersea Park's Millennium Arena will really cement its position as one of London's finest outdoor athletics venues for track and field events.

"The arena is already well used by schools and local sports and athletics clubs and is available to any member of the public who wants to go along and try out athletics for the first time.

"By continuing to provide and maintain a really first class athletics venue in Battersea Park we can hopefully encourage more young people to get involved in these sports and give them the facilities they need to fulfil their potential and perhaps become Team GB Olympic stars of the future.

"Meanwhile the work that's being done at Barn Elms will deliver a fantastic Olympic legacy for Wandsworth.

"Barn Elms is already a superb sports venue with really excellent facilities. Now we are adding beach volleyball and a range of other sports to its long list of great attractions."

Barn Elms offers a diverse range of sports and leisure activities for local people and schools.

The 52 acre site offers a number of grass pitches for rugby, football, cricket, Aussie rules and rounders as well as specialist facilities such as archery, athletics, field events, a gym and boathouse for rowing. It also has artificial surfaces offering tennis, netball and hockey.

As well as the eight lane running track and facilities for a full range of track and field disciplines, the Millennium Arena in Battersea Park also boasts a fitness centre, with cardiovascular and resistance machinery, an aerobics studio and sauna. Directly adjacent are 19 floodlit tennis courts and two multi-purpose all-weather pitches.

For more information about these venues and all the other sports, leisure and fitness centres in the borough visit www.wandsworth.gov.uk/sport

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Recent comments

This is all well and good, but the real problem in Wandsworth is a shortage of floodlit facilities. It's virtually impossible to book a floodlit pitch on a weekday evening Monday to Thursday. So this limits people's access to sport, to either summer evenings or weekends outside of summer.
Alistair Davis

1 November 2012

Well Ed, if you can tell me what organised sports are currently being played on the land which is being sold at Elliott school, you can make me 60001
John

7 September 2012

Schools have to pay for these onsite facilities which is just one of the reasons selling school playing fields is so wrong. Take Elliott school for example. The council have agreed to sell 79% of the existing sports courts leaving only a small area 'freely' available to student to use before and after school and during breaks. Student for the next centuries will pay dearly for the schools gross miss-management and wandsworths political ideologies. Ravi even has the cheek to say no playing fields are being lost. 60,000 people disagree.
Ed Lattimore

6 September 2012